PRSA Central Iowa Chapter Annual Report for 2019

What an amazing year! Your Board of Directors worked hard to deliver high-quality programming, networking opportunities and professional development sessions to hundreds of professionals this year. Here are some of the highlights:

  • Four quarterly luncheon programs were offered which focused on battling the retail ice age, lottery fraud and public relations, crisis communications following a natural disaster, and pitching best practices, with an average meeting satisfaction rate of 96 percent among 220 registered members and guests.

  • The Friday FYI series continued to be a hit. We used these breakfast meetings to discuss video for public relations, communications management from risk to reputation, engaging target audiences, and messaging across borders. With average attendance for these events at 35, free programming was a great recruitment tool as we introduced communicators to PRSA. 

  • The first ever Metro Marketing Mixer was held in January. PRSA Central Iowa teamed up with the American Advertising Federation, American Marketing Association, National Agri-Marketing Association, and the Social Media Club to host more than 200 marketing and communication professionals at the Iowa Taproom. Attendees networked and received updates from each of the organizations.

  • Partnering with the Social Media Club, we hosted a social media workshop where the 26 attendees received tips and tricks that could be immediately implemented.

  • The two Regional Representatives were instrumental in bringing programing to Eastern Iowa and ensuring those members had a voice on the board. Because of their dedication, we offered our first live-streamed quarterly luncheon. Eastern Iowa members gathered in Cedar Rapids to hear Terry Rich’s presentation How a lottery ticket, a hot dog, great PR and Bigfoot foiled the largest lottery fraud in U.S. history.

  • OctoPRfest, Iowa’s annual strategic communication conference, welcomed 181 professionals to the Ron Pearson Center for a terrific lineup of national and local speakers. The sponsorship committee set a new record securing $10,000 in sponsorships. We also recognized Ferne Bonomi, APR, for her 40-plus years of service to PRSA and our Chapter.

  • A record number of 98 PRIME Award entries were submitted via a new online judging platform. From those entries, five individual award winners and 34 award winners in 46 categories including campaigns and tactics were recognized by the Chapter.

  • We also hosted several networking events, including a meet-and-greet for new members, an APR-only event prior to OctoPRfest, PRSA PR and communications tours and our annual holiday party in December.

  • A huge thank you to our quarterly luncheon sponsors. Your generosity allowed PRSSA students to attend for free.

  • Our annual goal for the scholarship program was to increase professional development and advanced degree applicants by at least one in each category. We exceeded that goal with three applicants for the $500 Advanced Degree Scholarship, two applicants for the $500 Professional Development Scholarship and seven applicants for the $1,500 Ferne Bonomi and Dr. Henry Milam PRSSA Scholarship.

  • As part of our three-year strategic plan, we launched our community service public relations plan. Everybody Wins! Iowa was selected from 15 applications to receive pro bono public relations services from the Chapter. We will be working with the organization's full-time staff and volunteer marketing committee to increase awareness about the organization and increase mentor participation.

  • We added 34 members in 2019, bringing our chapter membership to 203. The number of members who have earned the prestigious Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) increased bringing the total APR count to 63.

  • Your membership chair visited the PRSSA chapters at Drake University, Iowa State University, Simpson, University of Iowa and University of Northern Iowa to engage the next generation of communicators.

Thank you to the talented and dedicated board of directors and the many volunteers who worked diligently to advance our profession this year throughout Iowa. It has been an honor serving as the president of PRSA Central Iowa and I can’t wait to see what’s next for our Chapter under Ryan Johnson’s leadership. If you would like to get involved with the Chapter in 2020, please contact Ryan at [email protected].



Return to list